Film

It still exists. And Brooklyn has a community darkroom where you can develop it and print your photos.

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Marine Park- First Visit 1/9/16

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Inlet with goose, ducks, swans, and gulls

Despite the clouds, the day was quite warm and I enjoyed walking the eastern trails and looking at winter waterfowl. I packed a lunch and there are picnic tables and toilet facilities available in the Salt Marsh Nature Center.

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Exterior of Nature Center- Closed for the winter, but a great resource in the spring

The trail along the western side of the inlet was closed by a massive pile of fresh mulch. I imagine that the areas most in need of stewardship are along that trail.

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Mulchfest- all those Canadian xmas trees get chopped up and used for paths and tree mulching.

From my Parks department training I was looking for degraded wooded areas where local species were being outcompeted by invasive plants. The reason this is suboptimal is because the nonnative species do not provide habitat for wildlife, biodiversity and resilience.

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Degraded landscape?

I believe this is what a degraded area¬†looks like. There was a section that had been burned and there was a lot of trash. My next step for stewardship is an onsite training, so I’ll learn more about this soon.

Slow Travel Trip Report 8/15/15: Appalachian Trail Delaware Water Gap to Mohican Outdoor Center Part 1, Facts

Not Slow Enough- Slow Travel Learning Curve

 

Where I went: Delaware Water Gap, PA to Mohican Outdoor Center, NJ

Trail: Appalachian Trail 10.3 miles out, Return trip via red blazed Coppermines trail down to Old Mine Rd- approx 13 miles.

Distance: 84 miles by bus on Martz Trailways, 10.3 miles on foot day one, 13 miles on foot day two, 84 miles back by bus

Time: Departed Queens 7:00AM Saturday, Back home for dinner 5:45PM Sunday

Cost: Total $191 not counting items bought in previous years for other trips

  • $66.50 for roundtrip bus ticket NYC to Delaware Water Gap
  • $37.50 for bunk in cabin at Mohican Outdoor Center
  • $25 for Appalachian trail guide to New York and New Jersey including detailed map
  • $12 light weight water bottle
  • $amortized Marmot Trestles 30 sleeping bag ($99 bought 2 years ago, used on several trips since and hopefully will last ten years)
  • $40 adventure pants on sale (bought for the trip but will will wear every weekend until they disintegrate)
  • $10 food. I brought too much, but it made me happy to know I wouldn’t run out. And I thought I’d be hungrier.
  • $free earplugs I found in bunkroom (unopened, I’m not that frugal that I would pick up used earplugs. yet.i think, I wasn’t tested)
  • $free branded mug from work that perfectly fits a packet of ramen noodles with boiling water
  • $amortized to nothing EMS Ascent PL 2500 backpack that I bought more than 15 years ago. The first day I thought it was too old and I needed a replacement, but the second day I repacked with new hiking knowledge and it was much more comfortable
  • $gift collapsible Naturehike hiking pole, worked great, thanks Dad!

Who I went with: Self. Solo.


One Paragraph Analysis: I’m glad this is a slow travel blog. The hike was tough- the Appalachian Trail is extremely challenging in route and trail construction, almost all of my equipment was new and untested, and as much as I told myself to slow down, observe and enjoy I was very goal oriented and wanted to “finish” by 2PM each day so I pushed myself and tore my feet up pretty badly.

Should you go?: Hell, yes! If you have ever read Wild or A Walk in The Woods and thought, I’d like to do that. Or, I want to have a transformative  wilderness experience. Or, someday I’ll hike the Appalachian Trail. Do this first and soon- if you live in the NY metro area it is close and relatively inexpensive (if you factor in not quitting your job to hike for 6 months). If you are like me, the only way to get over a particular obsession is to jump in. After reading a couple dozen books.

Trip Planning: Away we go

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Do you read guidebooks and price tickets to places for entertainment? Do hotel and attraction listings sooth you to sleep? Do you always know where your passport is in case someone invites you to Paris for the weekend, although this has never happened and you live in New York? 

This weekend is the weekend I break in my new equipment. I’ll post a full equipment list, “If you go” and trip narrative next week. Sneak peak- it is slow, local, sustainable and epic.

Trip Planning: Youtube and the unbearable Ultralightness of Being

One way to really get the most out of planning any adventure is through research. New York Times articles about studies show that much of the joy of taking a vacation (percentagewise?) comes from contemplating and planning it before you go. I’ve always done as much reading as possible about places I plan to travel, and lately I have been spending an increasing amount of time on youtube watching others talk about doing things I’d like to do. As probably everyone else in America realized five + years ago, this is a fascinating way to connect with likeminded exhibitionist weirdos all over the world! My top picks in recent weeks:

Pantry Pilgrimage: Marmite (UK)

  I first tasted Marmite when I was thirteen on a summer school exchange trip to the countryside near Totnes, Devon. My passion for it developed on my Junior Year abroad in York, and whenever I want a cheap mental trip back I can spread butter (or Olio!) and marmite on a piece of cold toast or limp “whole meal” bread with a strong cup of Yorkshire tea and imagine the tiny kitchen I shared with the “freshers” at Vanbrugh college. British students have a grand system of sustenance-pot noodle, spaghetti bolognese and fish fingers. Marmite is the one that stuck for me. It used to be unusual to see in US shops and I would buy some in the UK, but here in Queens I can buy it in most groceries. 

What to read while on your culinary journey: The book that inspired me to go to York for my JYA was Behind the Scenes at the Museum by Kate Atkinson. And all the british children’s lit my mother and grandmother had shared with me as a child. Classic anglophilia begun from the Beatrix Potter themed baby breakfast set I used until I was 20. P.S. while going on my mental journey,I note the coordinates of Potter’s studio for my someday real UK Coast to Coast walk starting in the Lake District.